Weekly Must-Reads: April 26

A list of the essential articles that I posted to Twitter from April 11 – April 24, 2010.  This week’s topics include: Strategy & Governance; IRS Trends; Social Media & Fundraising; Jewish Nonprofits; Israel Economy & Finance; and Potpourri. Continue reading

Dear Mr. Foundation, Please Reject My Application

Four separate times in my life, I have hit the proverbial pavement looking for a job.  I remember very clearly the two types of rejection that I received:

  1. The “Outright” No – Painful and deflating but leaving no doubts. I moved on, hoping the future had something better in store.
  2. The “We Were Very Impressed but Need Time to Decide How Best to Employ You” No – Slow and dragged out.  A lot of positive energy and upbeat words professed.  Encouraged, I even stopped looking at other prospects. Yet, despite all the enthusiasm, in the end no position was offered or available.

Give me the “Outright No” any day of the week and twice in a recession; you win some, you lose some.  The second, drawn-out no, is still a no, but wasted my time and got my hopes up over nothing.  Why not tell me no from the beginning instead of playing achy-breaky games with my heart?

Unfortunately, nonprofit organizations are being subjected to this same treatment, even more so now after the recession and the Madoff scandal. Continue reading

Weekly Must-Read Links: January 17

A list of the essential articles that I posted to Twitter from January 10, 2010 – January 16, 2010.  This week’s categories: Crisis in Haiti; Internet, Social Media & Fundraising; Accounting, Economy, & Finance; Israel Economy & Finance; and Potpourri. Continue reading

Weekly Must-Read Links: January 10

A list of the essential articles that I posted to Twitter from January 3, 2010 – January 9, 2010.  This week’s categories: Nonprofit Strategy & Governance; Internet, Social Media & Fundraising; Israel Economy & Nonprofits; and Potpourri. Continue reading

The Five Fingers of Fundraising Strategy

The holiday season of November & December has nonprofits both excited and nervous at the same time. Gaily Perry writes that:

For many nonprofits, one out of every two gifts comes in the last three months of the year…Online Giving is even more important at year-end. About 40 percent of online gifts are made in December. And 40-60 percent of those gifts are made the last two days of the year.

So naturally, everyone is rushing to find the best fundraising medium that will net their organization the most donations possible.  But charities need to take a step back because, believe it or not, proper fundraising encompasses more than just “direct mail vs. email solicitations” and even “Facebook vs. Twitter.” Continue reading

Article: Grantmaking in Tough Economy

I came across this article from Guidestar (reprinted from Opportunityknocks.org).  Actually, the full title is “Stories of Smart (and not-so-smart) Grantmaking in a Tough Economy.”  This article is a great example of short and sweet.  The author, a fundraising consultant with more than 20 years of experience, shares three stories from clients.  The questions in each story are the kind of questions that nonprofits are asking every day; each with a different lesson. Continue reading

Israeli Study Finds that Foundations Are not Effective in Checking Nonprofits

An article was recently posted on Midot’s website highlighting a joint study done by Midot and Sheatufim.   The study was presented at a Sheatufim conference on June 23, 2009.  The many findings of the study include:

  • Israeli philanthropic foundations are investing great resources in the grant process and in grant selection before the transferring of funds to nonprofits; however, most foundations lack clear criteria that accompany the process and rely only on the reports from the recipients themselves.
  • Even though the processes of the different foundations are similar, there exists little cooperation between the various foundations.
  • Most foundations do not rely on external professionals to help check the recipients’ usage of the grants.
  • Most foundations do not implement a suitable analysis before the donation is given.
  • Foundations reported a lack of evaluation and measurement tools to check recipient organizations.  Foundations also noted a lack of tools to help analyze the financial statements of the organizations. Continue reading